Andreas Mikkelsen's Skoda UK Motorsport team boss Pierfrancesco Zanchi reckons his drivers' victory on Rally di San Marino last weekend will hand him a major boost as he prepares to tackle Sata Rallye Acores for a second time next week.

Mikkelsen, who was competing on the Italian Gravel Trophy round in a Skoda Rally Team Italia Fabia Super 2000, similar to the one he uses in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, finished fourth in the Azores last season in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000.

"We needed to win in San Marino and that's exactly what we did," said Zanchi. "We are pleased to be leading the [Italian Gravel] championship and are very confident ahead of Sata Rallye Acores."

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Of his victory on the gravel stages in and around San Marino, Mikkelsen added: "The strategy was to take a lead and maintain it carefully.

"We watched our competitors and maintained a comfortable lead without pushing so hard that we made errors."

Mikkelsen is currently seventh in the 2011 Intercontinental Rally Challenge drivers' standings after five rounds.